El Dorado News-Times
TODAY IN HISTORY
Today is Friday, Feb. 17, the 48th day of 2023. There are 317 days left in the year.
Today's Highlight in History: On Feb. 17, 1801, the U.S. House of Representatives broke an electoral tie between Thomas Jefferson and Aaron Burr, electing Jefferson president; Burr became vice president.
On this date:
In 1815, the United States and Britain exchanged the instruments of ratification for the Treaty of Ghent, ending the War of 1812.
In 1863, the International Red Cross was founded in Geneva.
In 1864, during the Civil War, the Union ship USS Housatonic was rammed and sunk in Charleston Harbor, South Carolina, by the Confederate handcranked submarine HL Hunley in the first naval attack of its kind; the Hunley also sank.
In 1897, the forerunner of the National PTA, the National Congress of Mothers, convened its first meeting in Washington.
In 1944, during World War II, U.S. forces invaded Eniwetok Atoll, encountering little initial resistance from Imperial Japanese troops. (The Americans secured the atoll less than a week later.)
In 1959, the United States launched Vanguard 2, a satellite that carried meteorological equipment.
In 1964, the Supreme Court, in Wesberry v. Sanders, ruled that congressional districts within each state had to be roughly equal in population.
In 1972, President Richard M. Nixon departed the White House with his wife, Pat, on a historic trip to China.
In 1988, Lt. Col. William Higgins, a Marine Corps officer serving with a United Nations truce monitoring group, was kidnapped in southern Lebanon by Iranian-backed terrorists (he was later slain by his captors).
In 1995, Colin Ferguson was convicted of six counts of murder in the December 1993 Long Island Rail Road shootings (he was later sentenced to a minimum of 200 years in prison).
In 2014, Jimmy Fallon made his debut as host of NBC's "Tonight Show."
Ten years ago: Danica Patrick won the Daytona 500 pole, becoming the first woman to secure the top spot for any Sprint Cup race. (Patrick covered the 2½-mile Superspeedway in 45.817 seconds, averaging 196.434 mph. A week later, Jimmie Johnson won the race, while Patrick finished eighth.) Mindy McCready, 37, who'd hit the top of U.S. country music charts before personal problems sidetracked her career, died by her own hand in Heber Springs, Arkansas.